OVERLAND PARK, Kan. — Rachel Mast, like most teens, has been looking forward to her prom night for years—from the dress and the makeup to, most importantly, her date.
"My date is so hot and he's so great and he is so amazing," said Mast.
Mast and hundreds of other teens from across the region gathered in Overland Park on Saturday night for a very special prom all their own. It was the 18th annual Prom Night, put on the by Down Syndrome Guild—and for one night these teens got to leave their insecurities in their seats and hit the dance floor with their friends.
"He's just like everybody else," said Carol Prothe, whose son, Ryan, is Rachel Mast's prom date. "He's here, he's gonna be on the dance floor. He's not getting stared at, he's not getting finger pointed. He's just like everyone else."
Carol Prothe says that her son has been waiting to come to this prom since he was a kid.
"Everybody wants their kid to be included," said Prothe. "To be treated as a human being. Who doesn't want that for their kid?"
Instead of judgment, for one night Ryan Prothe received love in the most genuine form.
"Ryan I'm gonna say something to you. You're amazing and I can't believe I'm your date," said Mast.